For the first decade since 1910-19, the Yankees did not appear in a World Series. That hurts, but let’s lighten the mood by looking back on the best moments of the past ten years, now that the current decade is coming to a close.
There might not have been any moments in the Fall Classic, but there were still so many unforgettable games that shouldn’t be pushed aside because of the eventual result.
Let’s start from the beginning:
ALCS, Game One: Comebacks are big in Texas
I know this one should be fondly remembered for much of the Yankee fanbase, because it didn’t include a home run. Down 5-1 in the eighth, Brett Gardner started the rally with a hustle infield single, then the avalanche came. A double by Derek Jeter, walks to Nick Swisher and Mark Teixeira, and three straight singles by Alex Rodriguez, Robinson Cano and Marcus Thames gave the Yanks a 6-5 lead, all without recording an out. The Yanks won the game, but not the series.
July 9: DJ3K
Jeter made history with an exclamation point as part of a five-hit afternoon, because of course he did.
ALDS, Game Three: Raul rules
Joe Girardi raised eyebrows when he pinch hit Raul Ibanez for Rodriguez, but then Ibanez raised the roof, and blew it off three innings later:
Honorable mention for this season is when the Yanks fell in a 9-0 hole at Fenway on April 21, then exploded for a historic comeback thanks to Teixeira and Nick Swisher:
August 8: A-Rod’s revenge
It was a lonely season for Rodriguez given everything swirling around his name in terms of PED use. After it took Ryan Dempster approximately 27 tries to finally complete his puzzling decision to intentionally plunk Rodriguez, Joe Girardi went absolutely ballistic and then so did Rodriguez, but at the plate. He went 3-for-4 with this mammoth home run to dead center:
This season pretty much stunk (just take the Sporcle quiz if you don’t remember how bad it was), but it also provided fitting farewells for two legends in Mariano Rivera and Andy Pettitte:
September 25: Fantasy became reality
Jeter said goodbye to Yankee Stadium in the most fitting way possible: by doing something awesome.
July 25: AAA-Rod
Rodriguez and the Yanks hit a wall down the stretch of this season, but experienced a resurgence for most of the year, especially when he blasted three dingers to set up the game-winning homer by Yankees legend John Ryan Murphy.
August 14: Still alive (for now)
Fighting for their divisional lives, the Yanks briefly slowed the surging Blue Jays on a pinch hit three-run bomb by Carlos Beltran and an epic battle between Andrew Miller and Troy Tulowitzki that ended after 12 drama-packed pitches.
August 13: Baby Bash Brothers
Aaron Judge and Tyler Austin made history by becoming the first two players to hit their first MLB home runs in back-to-back at-bats.
October 4: Let’s get wild
Down three, Didi Gregorius brought the Bronx to life with a game-tying blast in the first inning, and Gardner and Judge followed with their own to give the Bombers their first postseason win since 2012.
ALDS Game Three: Stayin’ alive
Swing and a drive to right!
ALDS Game Five: Comeback complete
Gardner put together an epic at-bat against Cody Allen and eventually gave the Yanks crucial breathing room in a decisive Game Five.
ALCS Game Four: Rally time
Trailing in the game and the series, the Yanks put together arguably their most memorable rally of the decade, capped off by Gary Sanchez’s clutch double.
May 2: A literal knockout punch
Tied 0-0 in the ninth, Sanchez blasted a three-run homer to center field to give the Yankees the lead over the Astros, and Ken Giles was so mad about it he decided he deserved to lose some teeth or something.
October 3: Athletics adjourned
Judge made sure the Bombers wouldn’t have to come from behind in this Wild Card Game, sending the Stadium into a frenzy in the first inning.
July 18: A savage rant
In what became the rallying cry of the 2019 Yankees, Aaron Boone unleashed a tirade after he was ejected, and Jomboy was all over it on Twitter. Thank God he was, because it was glorious.
July 24: Game of the Year?
Arguably the wildest MLB game of the season, the Yanks and Twins battled to extra innings, where Aaron Hicks ended the game in incredible fashion.
ALCS Game Five: Ping
The Yanks could have rolled over after falling behind 3-1 in the ALCS, but DJ LeMahieu and Hicks made sure that didn’t happen, tagging Verlander for four runs. The big blow came from Hicks off the foul pole.
ALCS Game Six: Go DJ
The Yanks fought back against Houston again a night later, thanks to an epic at-bat by LeMahieu. The events that followed were downright painful, but on its own, this was an all-time moment right here.